Official Play! Pokémon rules and regulations documents updated, July 11

Catch up with the latest rules and regulations before your next Play! Pokémon competition.

The Play! Pokémon rules and regulations are periodically reviewed to maintain competitive balance in the Championship Series. Pokémon TCG and video game players and Professors are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the latest rules and regulations ahead of their next competition.

These updates take effect immediately, so the final events of the 2018 Championship Series season (including the Pokémon World Championships) and the first events of the 2019 Championship Series season will use these updated rules. This rules update contains several significant changes and revisions:

General event rules

  1. Qualification for Day Two Swiss rounds will now be achieved by players with 19 or more match points, or the Top 32 players, whichever number is greater. Previously, only players with 21 or more match points would qualify.
  2. Professors may now issue time extensions to matches for interruptions of any length. Previously, the interruption must have lasted for 3 minutes or longer before a time extension was assessed.

Pokémon TCG rules

  1. In Best-of-Three, Single-Elimination rounds, Game 2 no longer counts unless it is complete. If time is called in Game 2, the match is now resolved in the same way as it would be in Swiss rounds: the winner of Game 1 wins the match. There is no change to how the match should be resolved if time is called in Game 3.
  2. Sudden Death is replaced by a Tiebreaker Game. The only functional difference between the two concepts is that players must set up 6 Prize cards to start a Tiebreaker Game. The winner is the player who takes a Prize card, or meets any other win condition, first.

Video game rules

  1. Players who commit team list errors where the Pokémon or held item shown in the Battle Team does not match the Pokémon or held item recorded on the team list will now be given the opportunity to replace the erroneous Pokémon or held item with the correct one (as listed on the team list), provided it is immediately available. The penalty for this error remains unchanged.
  2. If both players choose the Run option on the same turn during a game in progress, the game will be recorded as having no winner—a game loss for both players.

These are just some of the most relevant changes in the most recent rules update. It is strongly recommended that you review the rules documents in full before your next tournament.

We’ll continue to follow the events of the season and review the documents at regular intervals. Check back here at for notices of when documents have been updated.

Good luck, Trainers!



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